Have I Got A Deal for You

*Advisement-I am whining excessively today.*

What if I told you that you could buy a nice-looking Mission Mobile with air conditioning and four-wheel drive? What if I said that vehicle had third-row seating and nearly new tires? What if it had a power plant that used the cheaper diesel fuel? You want it, don’t you? What if it had adjustable suspension built-in the front seats for the rough terrain? What if it had tint on the windows and skid plates underneath and a CD player? You want it, don’t you?

I did, too. It sounded great. So I bought it. I had a robust two days of in-country experience as a missionary when I signed the contract. What if I told you it came with three different outstanding debts against it from the previous owner that the salesman failed to mention? Still want it? Me neither. That’s why we still don’t have a title three years later. Seriously, it makes three years today and I still don’t have a title in my name.

What if I told you that you would drive along without a hitch for a year? Then the engine would blow up and it would take three months to fix it. The first time. Then it would run seven months and blow up again. This time it would spend 4 months and one week in the shop. After that it would run for 100 miles and explode for the third time. Do you still want it? Me neither.

It has been parked at the repair shop of a friend (clearly a different shop than before) since March. That’s nine months so far.  I don’t have the money to fix it in the recommended fashion (replace the junk motor with a newer, used one of a different model). I don’t have a title to sell it, either, so it sits.

After Christie’s accident, we needed some way to get to her physical therapy sessions. Since it was cheaper and quicker than the truck repairs, we bought an older little car that would be good on gas. We were traveling to therapy Monday through Friday. The economy mattered.

*Note-Christie was on the motorcycle because the Mission Mobile was in the shop with a blown motor the second time and we didn’t have another way to get her to language class. For this reason she hitched a ride with a friend on the back of a motorcycle and got hit.*

After more than two years with a lawyer they tell me the way is cleared to finally follow through with our transfer on the Mission Mobile. One day we will have a title on our lawn ornament.  It does take a long time to get a transfer. In comparison, we bought the econo-car in March and I got the title back three weeks ago.

*Side bar-the beater car’s motor blew on my way to the hospital last week to stay with Christie after her second surgery.*

The bottom line to all this is….

 God knows.

What!? I know I haven’t brought Him up until now, but without the peace of God, I would think all was lost. The truth is I would have to punch someone in the throat. It’s the law, without God’s backing you have to punch out the people taking advantage of you. Look it up.

He has used this to prove that we’re adaptable. I can say at almost any point during this lunacy that we have not been harmed by the absence of our transportation. Inconvenienced, certainly, but not damaged. We have walked. We have bummed rides. We have taken the bus. I have found myself in need of my HERO, God. He has repeatedly reminded me it’s only a car, it’s only money. Then He points me in the direction of all those people.

I pass them on the street as I walk to the vegetable stand or the hardware store. People in need of an introduction to Him. People that may not ever hear His Good News without my Montero taking a dump. He shows them to me so I would recognize the “Woe-Is-Me Fest” I used my walk time for, is a waste to the Kingdom of God.

So I have to repent of my self-centeredness and my blinded eyes to my neighbor. I have to give Him my anger over injustice. I have to start seizing the opportunities He is giving me.

God is not bound by the excuses I place on Him so He gives me a way to see past it. I still want my truck back, though.

What has God refocused you on lately?

9 thoughts on “Have I Got A Deal for You

Add yours

  1. Barba,

    You have a great beard, if I knew nothing else of you that would be enough, but you are also a blogger, a missionary, and apearantly, as poor a judge of cars as I am myself. Seriuosly though, great beard, and great story, I have been there myself I even own a Montero(gas) that only drives in two gears out of four. Sometimes it feels like God is picking on us, and nothing goes as we would like or plan. I am so glad that you found this as an opportunity to find new ways and people to minister to rather than focusing on what you do not have. God bless you and your mission.

    Men of Praise Motorcycle Ministry


    1. “(We) don’t care how ya get here,
      just get here if ya can.”

      Hum a few bars of that. Yeah if you plan on any transport other than a foot, a bus or a small moto then you may need to pack your own.

      I have been thinking of nesting a few chickens in that thing. It seems like a waste to let it sit.


  2. First, what in the world is going on with the blown motors? Three? And multiple times in the Montero? Good grief, man.

    Second, powerful wrap-up on the post. Recognizing that God has a perfect plan, a plan which may not always make sense – but a perfect plan none-the-less, is tough. It’s easy to feel defeated and overwhelmed but choosing to trust God and let Him use you through the inconvenience is awesome.

    Thanks for the great example!


    1. Thanks for the props but I am not that cool to recognize that. It’s seems to be the only way I can make sense of it. Sometimes God has to back me in a corner to use me. I just glad He keeps choosing me.


    2. Thanks for the props but I am not the cool or spiritual to have recognized that. It seems to be the only way to make sense of it. Sometimes God has to back me into a corner to use me. I’m just glad he keeps choosing me.


  3. Great story and great lesson. We are going through that ourselves. Our van has been down a year with no money for repairs or a new vehicle. We do not want to go in debt with a loan so we just save and wait, and have learned life goes on just fine without a vehicle.


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